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Marijuana extracts sold online contain incorrect cannabidiol dose, cautions study

Amid all the ambiguity surrounding the effects of marijuana, people in the United States continue to bank on the weed extracts for seeking relief from various problems, including persisting pain, seizures, anxiety, etc. Today, marijuana extracts containing cannabidiol are sold both online and at retail stores. However, a group of researchers have said that the buyers of such products do not usually get what they might have bargained for.

A study titled “Labeling Accuracy of Cannabidiol Extracts Sold Online” tried to find out how often these marijuana extracts contain either greater or reduced doses of cannabidiol vis-à-vis the mentioned level. The researchers determined how some cannabidiol products also contained tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), which causes its consumers a high, despite the chemical not being included in the list of ingredients printed on the label. The study, published online in The JAMA Network in November 2017, revealed how cannabidiol does not produce a high unlike THC.

The researchers observed 84 cannabidiol products sold online by 31 different companies. An evaluation of these products revealed that the extent of cannabidiol in the products ranged from 0.1 milligram per millimeter to more than 650 milligrams per millimeter. A closer observation revealed that only 31 percent of the products had been labeled correctly, 43 percent had increased contributions of cannabidiol compared with what was indicated on the label and 26 percent included reduced concentrations of cannabidiol than what had been printed on the label.

Though increased amounts of cannabidiol may not cause harm, the patients using the products with lower cannabidiol levels are unlikely to gain the kind of medical benefit they might be seeking. Lead author of the study Marcel Bonn-Miller said, “The biggest implication is that many of these patients may not be getting the proper dosage.”

Apart, an assessment of the products also revealed 21 percent of the products containing THC not listed on the label at concentrations of roughly 6.4 milligrams per millimeter. This kind of THC level may result in intoxication or impairment among its users, especially children.

Lapse in regulation

The observations made in the study are a cause of worry owing to the possible adverse effects of mislabeled cannabidiol. The researchers maintained how mislabeling or wrongful listing on products could be the result of insufficient regulation and potential oversight of such products. “There are currently no standards for producing, testing or labeling these cannabidiol oils. Selling these oils without oversight, there is no way to know what is actually in the bottle,” Bonn-Miller said.

Some previous studies had indicated that the cannabidiol in marijuana may help patients suffering from inadequate sleep problems, multiple sclerosis and some symptoms of serious problems like Parkinson’s disease and schizophrenia. According to the National Institutes of Health (NIH), cannabidiol has antipsychotic effects. Though health care providers and researchers have not been able to explain the exact cause of these effects, the impact of cannabidiol is said to aid in preventing the breakdown of the chemical that affects pain, mood level and mental functioning.

In the past few years, many American states have legalized the use of marijuana, including cannabidiol, for medical purposes. As the sale of marijuana and its products continues to be illegal under the federal law and the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) disapproves of its use, it has resulted in inaccurate labeling of certain products containing cannabidiol.

Considering the rising prevalence of marijuana use and problems akin to addiction or dependence, it is necessary that federal agencies regulate the products with cannabidiol for correct information on labels. “These findings highlight the need for manufacturing and testing standards, and oversight of medicinal cannabis products,” the study authors said.

Road to recovery

There is a need to carry out extensive research regarding the effects of marijuana and its various extracts. Indulgence in any kind of drug may result in addiction problems, and hence needs to be checked and treated timely. Seeking correct advice for a timely drug rehab help can allow an individual overcome addiction and live a happy and productive life.

If you or a loved one is grappling with an addiction, 247 Recovery Helpline is there to help. The experts at our 24-hour drug helpline can assist you in finding the right treatment programs. Call at our helpline 855-441-4405 for a prompt response or post your query via online chat.

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